Fall…and Apples….and a Recipe for Tastiness

It’s fall! We’ve had a few days of beautiful weather with no pollution, lots of golden leaves, and fall fruits. And you’ll be glad to know that even though it’s China, trees still turn yellow and gold and red and purple here. I know you were all worried about that.

The view from our fourth-story balcony. The tree is a Gingko tree, which is supposed to have amazing fall colors. This one looks a little sad, though.

The Chinese seem to value fall and beauty more than people in other countries. There are always Chinese pulling out their phones to take pictures of a beautiful tree or flower. They love beautiful things.

A still- green Gingko tree.
A still- green Gingko tree.

It’s also apple season around here, and every street vendor has baskets full of different varieties of apples. When it’s apple season, you can’t just let all those beautiful apples go to waste or even be eaten raw. So, although I can’t can anything (mason jars don’t seem to exist here and I don’t have any canning equipment anyways), there’s still a time and place to make applesauce and baked apples and other apple-y good things.

But, since I’d already made all those aforementioned things and still had apples, and since I now have a toaster oven to bake things in, I tried to make apple crisp.

So I sliced up my apples and put a little brown sugar and vanilla salt on them. Chinese brown sugar is extra dark and molasses-ey, so it made them extra good. And no, I didn’t put any cinnamon or nutmeg or allspice in–for one thing, I’m too much of a cheapskate to buy cinnamon for 20 Y for a little bottle, even if that is only around $4.00.

Don’t they look good?

Then, once my apples were ready, I mixed up a little flour, some butter, some regular sugar, and more vanilla salt (salt is pretty essential). I crumbled it on top (which I didn’t take a picture of since I’m a bad food blogger), and stuck it in my teeny weeny toaster oven. Yes, just one of those plates fits at a time.

See how yellow my butter is? Fresh from New Zealand!

The good part about having a teeny weeny toaster oven is that things cook in half the time. 20 minutes later, Jared and I were sitting down to yummy, salted-caramel flavored apple crisp. It’s really the best sort of apple crisp you’ll ever have. It tasted just like a caramel apple, except even better.

Jared approves!
Jared approves!
And he wanted to get a picture of the cook too.